“What matters is to improve lives in our community by providing results.”

— Author unknown

By SARA VANDEN BERGE News Editor

Helping those in need is really pretty simple, says Ron Mullins, president of First Financial Bank and co-chair of this year’s Erath County United Way campaign.

“We as givers have the easy job - all we have to do is write a check,” Mullins said. “It’s a lot more difficult to be working for the many United Way sponsored entities and tending to the needs of our community.”

Mullins, along with co-chair, Amy Troutman, is charged with organizing a campaign that hopes to raise at least $250,000 - money that will be used to support local United Way charities. But if you think raising a quarter of a million dollars is daunting to Mullins, think again.

His intent, he said, is to raise much more and is hoping to hit the $300,000 mark, a goal he calls “completely reasonable.”

“We are a giving community,” he said. “We have a tremendous spirit and lots of giving hearts. I will be disappointed if we don’t reach that goal.”

Mullins knows what he’s doing and is no newcomer to this fund-raising thing.

As the 2004 chairman of the Midland campaign, Mullins led the charge that raised $3.1 million.

“But we couldn’t seem to raise any more. We couldn’t get past that 3.1 million,” he said, as if sounding disappointed.

So be prepared. If Mullins hasn’t already asked you for a donation, he will. His passion for United Way makes him an inspiring leader and a man who is hard to say no to.

“I want people to consider this as an investment in our community,” he said. “There are tremendous needs here that are not being met and we need to do everything we can to help each other.”

Sara Vanden Berge covers courts, law enforcement, and business and political issues for the Empire-Tribune. She can be reached at sara.vandenberge@empiretribune.com. Her work number is 968-2379, ext. 240.